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Part One

Introducing HoraryIdentifying SignificatorsTraditional Sign RulershipsHouses in HoraryMiscellaneous TermsTurning the Chart
Planetary Joys
Turning the Chart
Example Horary
Part 1 | 2 | 3
Test & Summary

Learning Horary Astrology - free online tutorials written by Deborah Houlding

Chart Turning... Example Judgement

The Problem:

I was asked this question by a close friend. She was 28 at the time - her mother was 65 and her father was 68. Although they had lived in the UK for all of the querent's life, the parents were quite traditional in their views, the mother being Yugoslav, the father Polish.

The querent is the only daughter. She is a Libran sunsign (Sun at 10 degrees Libra); very pleasant, outgoing, friendly and freedom loving. Although close to her parents the generation gap showed. She found their traditional views on life quite oppressive and for the past 8 years had come to enjoy an ideal balance between spending time with her parents and exploring an independent lifestyle by working as a holiday rep for the travel company Intasun. This entailed working abroad throughout the summer season and returning to the family home to live with her parents through the winter.

The problem has its roots in the fact that whilst the querent had been working abroad the previous year, unbeknown to her, her mother became very ill with breast cancer. She had an operation and the tumour was believed to have been fully removed. The querent wasn't told about this until after she returned to the UK, and was concerned that her parents didn't call her home during this worrying period.

At the time that she asked the question, the querent had been agonizing over whether it would be wise to accept a contract of employment for another year's work abroad - the deadline for acceptance was drawing near. From a personal perspective she very much wanted to go - she loved her work and the independence it gave her - but she was worried that, although the mother was supposedly better, the father was starting to look quite old and ill. If his condition got any worse, the querent didn't know whether the mother would have the strength to look after him.

As the only daughter, the querent felt torn between pursuing her own professional interests and her responsibilities to her parents. The dilemma hinged upon whether the parents' health would be sufficient to see them through the upcoming season without her support. She understood that sometime in the future it would be necessary for her to give up her international career so that she could live at home and nurse her parents through old age. She was prepared for this but didn't want to make that sacrifice before it was necessary.

The Judgement:

The querent is signified by Mars, conjunct the Part of Fortune on the cusp of the 9th house. This indicates her will and desire to travel and describes her as poised to commit herself to that course of action. The querent would not normally be characterised as Martian in nature or appearance, but through the signification of Mars she is seen as erring towards her own interests, possibly recklessly, or at least with a clear intent that was ready to act. Mars is not a planet that hesitates unduly or naturally holds itself back for the benefit of others.

Although the prospect of death had never been ventured, I was aware that the querent's mother had recently endured a very serious illness. I was immediately struck by the fact that Jupiter, ruler of the 8th house of trauma and/or death, was retrograde on the cusp of the 4th house of parents, while 4th-ruler, Moon, applied to the square of Neptune (weakening, dissolution, loss) then MC-ruler Saturn (loss, disappointment, death). Since the health of both parents had been questioned, I separated out the signification of the mother and father to see which parent, if any, was at risk.

The Mother:

Turned chart for mother

The mother is signified by Saturn, a natural significator for old-age and weakness. Saturn is dignified in its own sign but afflicted by being under the Sunbeams, describing a weakened state, as one might expect for someone who has recently undergone a serious illness. The mother's 1st house signifies her health and vitality; her 6th house signifies the potential for illness or disease.

The 6th-house ruler Mercury is located in the mother's 1st house, indicating that her physical well-being is impeded by illness. Mercury is retrograde, demonstrating the return of a former illness or a recurring condition that will not easily be alleviated. Its angularity gives it power to cause harm. It turns direct at 9.48 degrees of Capricorn; its movement back to the conjunction of Saturn returning the full effects of the illness to the mother. The Moon separates from the square of Mercury, and translates its influence to Saturn, further strengthening the contact between them. Located on the mother's 10th house, the Moon relates to the attempts to affect a cure, but the cure was ineffective, as shown by the afflicted state of Venus, ruler of the mother's turned 10th house - Venus is retrograde and closely approaching combustion, where it loses its power.

The presence of Neptune and Uranus in the mother's 1st house show further afflictions to the mother's health. Neptune describes weakening and dissolution of the vital spirit; Uranus describes separation, break-down, and upsets caused through shocking revelation. The Moon is close to the square of Neptune, softening the mother's will and weakening her vital strength.

With significations of illness so apparent, the Moon' role as ruler of the 8th house offers concern through its applying square to Saturn. It translates the influence of its recent tryst with Mercury to a further confrontation with Saturn which, lying on the trine of Pluto, is beset by themes of heavy trauma and morbidity. The Moon's governorship of the 8th house brings issues of death to a planet that naturally signifies loss, which is itself tied to a planet that is ruthless and transformative. Set against the testimonies of illness, this collection of chart factors calls for a supreme effort of will, but the square of the Moon to Saturn shows that the mother's strength and vitality is ebbing and there is little to give hope that she will have the necessary vigour to overcome such a critical period.

The Father:

Turned chart for father

The querent's main concern was that her father was starting to look very old, tired and fragile. His health is signified by the 4th house and its ruler, the Moon, with any potential illness signified by his turned 6th house and its ruler, Jupiter.

Mars sits on the cusp of the father's 6th house. A natural malefic, its presence here draws our attention to the possibility of attack through illness or disease. Jupiter on the father's 1st house cusp confirms this, indicating that illness has invaded his body, whilst its retrograde action suggests the illness is likely to linger or recur. The Moon's condition, as a statement upon the father's health and vitality has already been noted. Its future aspects show weakening and presage a period of decline. Saturn rules the father's 7th and 8th houses tying him to issues of loss involving his partner and death. The theme is mirrored by the Moon's location in the father's 4th house, connected with endings and a need to put matters to rest.

The indications show further concern for the father. However, the Moon is angular and its forthcoming sextile to Mars offers a stronger argument that the father can find a will to resist disease. The Moon and Jupiter are separating, so whilst the presence of the disease is strongly highlighted, there is less cause for immediate concern than in the case of the mother where the significators are applying. Combining the factors that relate to the health of the parents, there is certainly reason to suggest that the querent's support would be needed at home, and her proposed work abroad would be ill-advised.

Prospects of the Career/Travel Opportunity:

Although Mars is straining at the 9th house cusp, the potential of this overseas career contract does not look promising. Relating back to the radical chart, the 9th house ruler - Jupiter - is retrograde, indicating a return. Jupiter opposes the Midheaven and lies within the opposition of Uranus, which afflicts professional interests through its volatile presence in the 10th house. Troubles overseas are also suggested in a general sense by the very presence of Mars on the 9th house cusp.

The querent needed to sign a contract, an issue that falls under the 3rd house of written agreements and is signified by Mercury. Mercury is afflicted by the Moon's square and its retrograde movement suggests that unseen matters come to light that prevent the contract being fulfilled. The Moon moves to the square of Saturn which, as the ruler of the 10th house of professional interests, denies the likelihood of this being a profitable and successful career move.


My conclusion was that this horary reveals real problems relating to the health of the parents, particularly the mother, indicating that they would need the querent's support during the year ahead. The afflictions concerning the career, contracts and overseas travel suggested that if the querent pursued her plans to travel, she would probably be interrupted by a need to return home for the sake of her parents.

The Outcome:

When I contacted the querent to discuss the chart she interrupted me and asked me not to tell her anything that the chart revealed. She had subsequently spoken to another friend and had made her decision to go. Within the few hours that elapsed between the question and my return call, she had signed and posted the contract and booked and paid for her tickets. Her permission withdrawn, I did not feel it appropriate to raise my concerns and simply told her that I hoped her parents would be well looked after by the good neighbours I knew she had.

The querent's experience of working abroad was later described as 'horrendous and stress-filled'. She requested a change of role and was given an alternative supervisory position in the South of England but within a matter of months Intasun - one of the UK's leading holiday firms - dramatically collapsed. (The indications for a lack of honesty, sudden disturbance and financial mismanagement on the part of the querent's employer are evident in the 10th house significations.) She returned home to find her mother in a very poor state of health and deteriorating rapidly. She died of Cancer on 12th May, 1991. The father's health appeared to improve whilst he was nursing his wife, but after her death he appeared to lose motivation and became very unwell. He was later diagnosed with lung cancer and died on August 14th 1994. The querent, being at home, was able to nurse both her parents and care for them throughout this difficult time.

 Continue to summary and final test on house rulerships

Horary Astrology

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